Slow Down and Savor Summer at the Beach

Long Island July4.2014

Sun, sand, swimming, steamers, farm stands and local wine… I spent the last week at my mom’s on Eastern Long Island where summertime is all about the beach. The beach report is on the radio every hour on the hour and the big question of the day is which beach should we go to today – the bay, the sound or the ocean? What’s the wave height? Which direction is the wind coming from? Will Hurricane Arthur ruin Fourth of July?

Some of the most beautiful beaches in the world are on Long Island and let’s just say that I savored every moment of beach time every day – swimming, sunbathing or just walking. Yes there were jellyfish and rip currents but you’d better believe I swam every day anyway.

After a couple of days, my city sense of time and urgency slowed right down and I forgot what the rush was. My plans to get up early and work on my book were replaced by lazy mornings, delicious brunches and afternoons spent at the beach. Followed by wonderfully lazy afternoons spent relaxing on the beach reading, napping and swimming followed by nightly walks looking at the stars (and a few fireworks too).

You know I’m a foodie, so there were big decisions to be made like… which farm stand has the best corn and can we still get local strawberries (we visited five farm stands searching out the last remaining local berries for strawberry shortcake!). My mom makes the most amazing pancakes and we came up with a new favorite – blueberry almond chocolate chip (omg so good!). We balanced out the decadent treats with huge delicious salads and sautéed vegetables with bulgur wheat and quinoa for dinner.

The local wine is tasty here too. What used to be potato fields when I was growing up on Long Island are now vineyards. The climate is temperate from the surrounding water and Gulf Stream – which makes the land perfect for growing grapes. We enjoyed a semi-dry Riesling from the Pindar Vineyards with a bucket of steamers fresh from the bay (yum!). 

Time slows down, and enjoyment is found in the simple pleasures – food, nature, friends and family. I’m reminded of what is really important to me and how much easier it is to connect to ME when I slow my pace down. I’m inspired to keep a slower pace for the rest of the summer (remind me if I forget, ok?). 

What are your favorite ways to slow down and savor summer?